Did you know that the federal government has launched a health information exchange network?

Yes, it is called #TEFCA and it is in production!

#ONC approved the first Qualified Health Information Networks in December 2023 and they are now sharing health information for several Exchange Purposes. State and regional #HIEs, healthcare providers, health plans and public health agencies are trying to decide which #QHIN is the “best fit” for them. 

This is not a simple decision. 

You should consider which QHIN offers your organization the most value. 

If your organization has multiple technical systems, you consider connecting them to different QHINs.  You should consider which QHINs will prioritize the Exchange Purposes in which you are the most interested.  There are lots of factors to consider!

If all this was not confusing enough, TEFCA keeps evolving. ONC has announced that it will publish in the Federal Register an updated version of the Common Agreement that will add specific provisions to support FHIR transactions which ONC is hoping will accelerate the adoption of FHIR-based exchange. Common Agreement v. 2.0 will also require every QHIN to use the same set of standard Terms of Participation for all of its customers that choose to participate in TEFCA. 

ONC will continue pushing new Exchange Purposes beyond Treatment with an emphasis on Individual Access to health information, Payment based exchange, Health Care Operations and Public Health.  It is understandable that you might not have focused on TEFCA given all of the other high-priority tasks that your organization faces. 

Participating in TEFCA is voluntary, so you will not be required by law to join any QHIN. ONC is trying to create enough value in TEFCA that healthcare providers, and many others, will choose to participate. Time will tell if the market perceives this value and adopts TEFCA in large numbers. 

Gravely Group is heavily engaged in TEFCA and will keep posting information that we hope will help you evaluate what TEFCA means for your organization.